Fountain Pen Restoration

Autumn Nib Harvest

Autumn, at least here in Minnesota (US) is a time of harvest.  The fields are abuzz with machinery gathering various crops for sale or to be stored.  So, too, it is time for me to harvest a few nibs for future use.   The three pens photographed below are, from top to bottom:

Pencraft (Kraker)/Chicago – Red Mottled Hard Rubber with Lotz Lever – circa early 1920s

Waterman 100 Year Pen – celluloid, circa 1941+

No Name Large Black/White Pearl Flat Top – circa 193os


All of the pens were picked up over this Summer for less than $10.00 each and came with numerous structural problems.  The Pencraft is completely discolored (the red pattern is barely visible), has a cracked cap, is missing the clip, and half of the lever is missing.  The Waterman has the familiar crazing of both ends – which is all to common in these later generation 100 Year Pens, is missing the clip, and has a crack in the cap.  The no name flat top has a missing clip, and is severely discolored (common with this plastic pattern).   All three, of course, need new sacs and pressure bar overhauls.

Sometimes it is important to know when a pen is not saveable.  These are three such pens.  However, each has parts which are salvageable, and can be used in the future.  I the case of all of these, the nib/section/feed are valuable.  The rest of each pen will be saved in a parts bin in case a lever box is needed (in the case of the 100 Year).

Below are the three after I removed the section from each.  The caps and barrels were placed in what I call my reject pond, which is a large bin that contains parts that have a low probability of ever being used again.  I have dipped in it for a clip or lever on rare occasions, but it is mostly parts that are of no use to future projects.


That leaves me with three nice section/feed/nibs units.  I knocked out each nib and feed and cleaned all three remaining nibs, feeds, and sections.  After cleaning, I reassembled the units, leaving me with three nice nibs – for now attached back to their original feeds and sections.  It remains to be seen whether they will be used together, or if I will just need a nib for an existing feed and section.  Below are the cleaned and polished units, waiting for a mate.


Details of each ~

Pencraft No. 3 – Chicago – damaged tip with no iridium, but a fairly rare imprint


Waterman No. 18 100 Year Pen


Warranted No. 6


Additionally, for those interested in estimated values of nibs, a site that I frequent is at

So, next time you see a glass, box or tray of beat up old pens, don’t forget to see if there is any value to the parts!

September 20, 2012 - Posted by | Pencraft Pens, Waterman 100 Year Pen | ,


  1. Interesting – to me, anyway! Have been doing the same thing for quite a few years and have quite a collection. But who will buy?

    Comment by Rob | September 21, 2012 | Reply

  2. Phil,

    Do you tend to agree with the nib prices on that site? I have a lot of those nibs on various pens, and it seems to me that the nib valuation on those sites are worth more than the pen itself (in some cases). i.e., I paid $60 for a Parker 75, and it’s saying the nib alone is worth $75? Does that seem correct? It just seems odd to me, at least.


    Comment by Derek S. | September 22, 2012 | Reply

  3. I just read your blog about parting out pens. It is a great reminder of the value of many parts on a pen. That being said, do you still have the For the 100 year Waterman? I’m actually looking for one. If so, please let me know.

    Thanks, Chuck

    Comment by Chuck Mielke | December 27, 2017 | Reply

    • Chuck,
      I no longer have the nib section you are looking for. I found an incomplete pen and used it to complete, then sell. Good luck in your search.

      Comment by Phil | January 4, 2018 | Reply

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